One of the biggest surprises of Nintendo’s E3 digital event was the reveal of Splatoon — a colorful squad based online “shooter.”
It's a brand new IP, and blends a playground aesthetic with more traditional shooter elements. There's twist however — instead of shooting bullets, players blast a stream of neon paint. The point is to control territory, not rack up a massive kill count. Oh, and you’re playing as a morphing squid that can swim in your own paint.
Game producer Hisashi Nogami likened the concept to the simple joy of making a giant mess.
"Just talking about shooting paint, it's sort of like vandalism," he told Polygon.
"If we were all in this room and someone came in and said OK guys make this room as messy as you want, you'd probably get really happy and like, destroy things!" he said, laughing.
"I think people still have that child-like feeling of wanting to make a mess, wanting to get dirty. I think they would be able to enjoy this game. And I think people have that no matter how old they get."
That bears out in the gameplay. In my demo session with the game, there was undeniable joy in splattering all of the territory I could (and any opponents I could find) with outrageous orange paint. Nogami was right — making a mess is just plain fun.
Splatoon is due out in 2015 for the Wii U.